Immaculate Conception

December 8, 2016

By Lucy Silvio, CSJ
Baton Rouge, LA

Gn 3:9-15, 20; Ps 98:1-4;
Eph 1: 3-6, 11-12; Lk 1:26-38

God chose us in Christ before the world was made
to be holy and faultless before God in love,
marking us out beforehand to be adopted
sons and daughters through Jesus Christ–
that all might praise the glorious favor
God has bestowed in us in God’s beloved. Eph 1:3-6

We don’t hear words like “immaculate” and “conception” too much these days. So what are we celebrating in today’s Feast of the Immaculate Conception?

We are celebrating that before Mary said “Yes” to becoming the mother of God, she was “Full of Grace.” According to Tradition and Dogma, Mary is the new Eve, redeemed from the first moment of her existence, blessed by God “in Christ before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless”(Eph 1: 3-4).

To recognize Mary as graced in this way goes against our merit system. In the face of the Captain’s astonishing love for her, Maria Von Trapp in The Sound of Music sings “I must have done something good.” In the face of God’s freely bestowed grace to her, completely beyond her earning or deserving such love, Mary sings “My Soul Magnifies the Lord.”

We, too, are chosen to be full of grace, in Christ. In response, what is my song?

Gracious God, Mary had a faith that
your Spirit prepared and a love that never knew sin.
Trace in our actions the lines of her love
and in our hearts, her readiness of faith.
Place a song of praise on our lips.

Personal Challenge
Sing to the Lord a new song,
for God has done wondrous deeds (Ps 98).
Check back on Thursday for our Third Sunday of Advent reflection!

Courtesy of Ministry of the Arts

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